Yesterday was quite a day. Javier brought three women and two little boys to La Casa de Paso. Two of the women and one boy are from Honduras; the other woman and child from Guerrero. They are living on the street across from the shelter. On the way here Javier took them to the store and they bought food they wanted to cook. They all got to take showers. There is no access to even a clean toilet where they are, and to use the one filthy one costs money. They won't use it.
The little boys played happily while the women chatted and cooked. At one point the boys lined up a bunch of cars etc in the entrance to the kitchen! So cute!
Then, with Javier translating, I spent about an hour talking to one of the women as I filled out the AOL encuesta to get her and her son on the list. There are many difficult questions, and at one point she started to cry. I always say how sorry I am to have to ask these hard, detailed questions. We stop, take a little break when needed. They understand. They left, and about 1/2 hour later, Samantha arrived. She walked across from San Diego. The three of us headed down to the street with lots of coloring books, crayons, and items Samantha brought. What a time!
In the course of one 3-hour period: - About 40 kids colored - I took a pic of the sweetest baby sleeping on the curb - My heart stopped as I witnessed a 3-year-old boy run into the street and come within a foot of being hit by a car as several moms screamed - Javier encouraged three moms to try some of the intricate coloring pages, telling them, "It relieves stress." The women said that was exactly what they needed, and started in! They loved doing them, so we gave them ownership of that book and the colored pencils. Any kids who want something from "their" book now have to go through them! - At one point Javier decided to model being a big kid coloring.
It was a very good day. We were asleep by 7:30.